January 8th, 2009
08:00 PM ET
12 years ago

Amtrak adds trains on Inauguration Day; tickets still available

Amtrak is adding more service to deal with expected inauguration crowds.

Amtrak is adding more service to deal with expected inauguration crowds.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Automobile traffic will be diverted; bridges closed. But from Amtrak, there's a bit of good news about Inauguration Day travel.

Amtrak says that it has increased the number - and length - of trains running to Washington on January 20, and that tickets are still available.

But they're going quick.

Amtrak can accommodate 5,600 in-bound passengers on a normal weekday, but will accommodate 8,200 to 8,300 on inauguration day, said Amtrak Chief Operating Officer William Crosbie. "I don't think in the (37-year) history of Amtrak we've put on this much capacity," he said.

But space is limited and travelers are encouraged to purchase tickets soon. All Amtrak trains in the Northeast require reservations and ticket purchases before boarding.

(For schedules and other information, passengers can visit www.amtrak.com or call 800-USA-RAIL.)

Crosbie and Amtrak Police Chief John O'Connor have some advice for those coming to DC by train:

- When purchasing a ticket to DC, also buy your return ticket. Tickets will be on sale at Washington's Union Station, but the counter will be crowded.

- Take advantage of restroom facilities on-board the trains. Amtrak will provide additional portable facilities at Union Station, but there may be lines.

- Remember that there are no storage lockers at Union Station.

- Pay attention to the weather and dress appropriately.

- Have patience.

Filed under: Inauguration
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. Proud American

    All aboard for the 1st day of a brand new America.

    January 8, 2009 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  2. Lanny Goodman


    How did you become a journalist without knowing the difference between an adjective and an adverb? Tickets are going quickLY.

    January 8, 2009 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  3. glenn

    We need high speed rail in the US. I've been on the bullet train in Korea and that thing is the bomb. Clean and fast. Think about a network of high-speed rail in California, connecting its cities. The Northeast is ripe too. Basically, it's a great idea and we are fools to not embrace this not so new technology. We'd rather continue to schlep around the country on Amtrak's broken down trains. And don't give me that stuff about the Acela. The train I was on in Korea went 300 kph. France and Japan have comparable ones. Why not America?

    January 8, 2009 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  4. sbinkoski

    I thinks Palin is spouting sour grapes..

    January 8, 2009 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  5. Merle


    January 8, 2009 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  6. Chris in Va.

    Anyone who is planning to go to the Inauguration is a fool. NORMAL weekday traffic in D.C. is insanity on steroids, this will be a living nightmare! I'm less than 100 miles from D.C. and I wouldn't go if they gave me a seat on stage next to Obama, and I'm a DEM!!!!!

    January 8, 2009 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  7. ga.


    January 8, 2009 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  8. gregg45

    all aboard ,, which tower do i want,,, where does my smoke waver? amerika,,, u won,,, whom will you turn in ? your evil friend? next door ? wow amerika,,, go hitler go hitler

    January 8, 2009 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  9. Franklin in SC

    I wouldn't be caught within 300 miles of that madness.

    January 8, 2009 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  10. Joshua-James Pentz, III

    How outstanding for Amtrak to provide additional service. As a travel professional owning a corporate agency, my clients are all booked on the Acela in Business or First. And, the price is not inexpensive. My clients are prepared to pay for the finest rail transportation that we have in the USA, and on such an important day, they are all happy. And my bookings are a success!

    January 8, 2009 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  11. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    Step off the luxurious Acela train and onto the "crush-capacity" Metro lines, which will require Japanese-style "pushers" to shepherd the ten-deep riders into sardine-jammed cars after lengthy waits. Or stay home. Please?

    January 8, 2009 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  12. Brainwashed by liberal media

    12 more days until all of America's problems go away. The Messiah doesn't need a honeymoon. By February 1 the stock market will be at an all time high, unemployment will be at an all time low, the wars will be over, and life will be perfect. After all the hype from the campaign season, anything short will be a disappointment. God Bless B. Hussein Obama!!

    January 8, 2009 11:24 pm at 11:24 pm |
  13. JU

    Gregg45 –

    time to take your meds......

    January 8, 2009 11:25 pm at 11:25 pm |
  14. janice cahill

    I must give credit where credit is due. Obama is starting at a running pace and not waiting for Jan. 20, 2009 to begin his presidency. Jury is still out. I only wish the best for this country and if he can deliver that is great.

    January 9, 2009 12:09 am at 12:09 am |
  15. Justanobserver

    I wonder how many tickets were distributed to the "less fortunate." Didn't I hear something about sharing the wealth? Gee Wally, I haven't heard much of that kind of talk for a few weeks. Maybe they're in the mail Beaver.

    January 9, 2009 12:34 am at 12:34 am |
  16. buckeyebill

    I've seen the light!!! Griff is really the reincarnation of

    January 9, 2009 12:48 am at 12:48 am |
  17. Gus

    It is indeed a GLORIOUS day in America! However, I agree with the idea that even though I am a dyed-in-the-wool Obama supporter, southerner, and still teary-eyed at times, I would not be caught within a 300 mile radius of D.C. either. The town simply can't accommodate numbers like that.
    It IS however a BIG plug for faster, better rail service. I have ridden the bullet and Chunnel trains and America, Amtrak ain't no Bullet, (not even close..) Congress, get off your pork laden butts and revive good rail service! People will flock to an on-time, safe, comfortable and dependable railroad. Let's catch up with Europe and Asia in the transport world. Good luck Obama and Michelle.

    January 9, 2009 12:51 am at 12:51 am |